Slow Sailing

25 February 2020
29 November 2019 | Vero Beach
09 October 2019 | Washington, NC
27 September 2019
06 September 2019 | Norfolk, VA
07 August 2019 | Washington, NC
07 July 2019 | Washington
10 June 2019 | Washington, NC
15 May 2019 | St Augustine
30 April 2019 | Black Point, Exuma
16 April 2019 | Bahamas
02 April 2019 | Washington, NC
15 March 2019 | Washington, NC
10 February 2019 | Washington, NC
22 January 2019 | Washington, NC
07 January 2019 | Washington, NC
15 December 2018 | Washington, NC
03 November 2018 | Thetford, VT
21 September 2018 | Bradford, VT
13 August 2018 | Thetford, VT

We Stayed For A Reason

24 May 2014 | Opua Marina
We were all set to leave this past Monday with a fantastic weather window but at the last second, standing at customs, we found out that if we departed, the Temporary Import Permit that we get when we enter NZ would also end. This would mean hassles and possibly tax due on the SSB that we were going to have friends receive for us and really, we were a little crazy to leave without the radio anyway... So it meant that the whole morning was about rushing around getting ready, then all the indecision about whether to leave, then a decision not to and undoing a lot of the boat prep to stay. By 2pm we were mentally exhausted and emotionally screwed up. We decided to go for a walk to calm down.

From New Zealand, Year 2

We did the Russell coastal walk which involves taking a short ferry from our marina across to a peninsula where the trail starts. Along the way, we couldn't get over how many things are blooming- trees & shrubs in full bloom while maples & oaks are losing their leaves. What a country of contrasts. On the trail back, we came upon a weka bird, flat out on his belly in the middle of the trail, face in the soil. He couldn't stand up, couldn't lift his head but was conscious. It would appear that he'd been hit in the head but we couldn't see anything obvious. A weka is about the size of a kiwi, Europeans called it a wood hen but it's a strong, attractive bird. I have a pic of one I took previously in the Gt Barrier folder on Picasa.

We carried the bird about a half mile further on the trail till we got to the road and then we hailed a car. It wasn't hard since the couple who stopped were already curious about us thinking Jon was holding a kiwi. Fortunately they had a smartphone & could look up Robert's number from the Bird Recovery Center in Whangarei where we'd visited a few weeks ago. Sure enough, he had a connection in Russell and I called Gill (pronounced Jill) and she said she'd take the bird. But it was her anniversary & they had dinner reservations so could we hurry..... Since we were on foot, the nice vacationing couple that stopped agreed to take the bird to Gill. She texted me after dinner and our little weka wasn't happy but she had hydrated him & he was under a heat lamp. Despite our worry, we felt like it was the best & most important thing we'd done all day and it helped shake our self-centered, frustrated mood.
From New Zealand, Year 2

The following day was now our 20th anniversary and we were thinking that the best present could be to hear that the bird was still alive. Another text proved that he was, but no significant improvement. We did a long hike that day through Opua Forest on a beautiful ridgeline trail that ended in the next town over named Pahia. We perused the shops and Jon bought me some earrings- in keeping with my concern for the weight on the boat. We walked the rest of the way home and popped some champagne for making it another year!
From New Zealand, Year 2

We had a boat project day & I waxed the decks which felt good to get completed since it needed it and it's hard in the islands since the boat is often caked in salt. Meanwhile, the new SSB arrived (thank god we stayed) so Jon spent some time getting that installed & ascertained that it FIXED OUR PROBLEM! That means that the old SSB was never right from day 1 new. It just never wanted to tune and never wanted to put out the power when you first keyed the mic. Instead it was all over the place, sometimes it worked, sometimes it didn't. Then as of recently, it didn't more than it did. While Jon did make some improvements using sound advice from Terry Sparks, the ability to tune the radio was still unreliable. While we can't fully test it sitting here in the marina, it seems like a pretty sure thing that we can put this issue aside for now.

We joined Richard, Ali, Roby & Jen at the Yacht Club for “Quiz Night” and wouldn't you know we came in 6th out of 6 teams! We'd named our team “Last Wave” since we'll be in the last wave of cruisers to leave NZ and when the lady tallied up the totals to write on the board, instead of putting 6th, she just put LAST next to our team! OK, we get it. We stink at NZ trivia. But we had fun. Another update on the birdie said he was now sitting up, holding his head up and he'd eaten something. Gill said he's going to live and he wouldn't have if we hadn't of picked him up. It's just too cold now at night for a bird to be down like that. She thinks it was a head injury also. Maybe a territorial peck? Will never know. Another fine end to a day.

Yesterday, we all borrowed a car and made another “final grocery” run in anticipation of leaving this Monday with another weather window. Jon & I got dropped off at the trailhead to Haruru Falls and we walked back to the marina from there. It was a great, 5 hour walk. We had a picnic lunch at the falls with about 25 chickens. They seem to like picnic areas. On the way back, we happened to run into the couple that helped us with this bird! What are the chances of that?! The first thing they asked was “How's the weka?” It was fun to be able to give a good report. We got back to the boat to find a message from Gill that not only is he doing better, but he's eating more and getting feisty. He's almost ready to be let go but she'll keep him over the weekend since we're getting a cold front tomorrow. We're welcome to come to see his release, but we're leaving. By Monday it's expected that there may be frost as the wind shifts to the cold, south. Great! That'll make for some comfortable sailing, especially at night with no moon.

We're heading off to Vanuatu with the fridge stuffed with all sorts of treasures. We get back from the store thinking we have too much, then we use something and think oh gosh, maybe we don't have enough?! It goes round & round. I'm completely tired of stocking up though.
From New Zealand, Year 2

Today we took it easy. I did some baking in prep for the trip and Jon worked for 4 hours installing colored LED lights in our cockpit. We now have 8 different colors to choose from depending on our mood, using a remote control. I do have to say that the morale on this ship has improved a great deal this week. Staying gave us more time to enjoy this place we love so much and we were able to give a bird a second chance. And oh yeah, that issue that we threw some money at? It WORKS!

Vessel Name: EVERGREEN
Vessel Make/Model: Tashiba 40 Hull #158
Hailing Port: E. Thetford Vermont
Crew: Heather and Jon Turgeon
Hello! We are Heather & Jon Turgeon of S/V Evergreen. We started sailing in 1994 on our first boat, a Cape Dory 31, then sought out a Tashiba 40 that could take us around the globe. It has been our home for 19 years. We've thoroughly cruised the East coast and Caribbean and just completed our [...]
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